Friday, May 11, 2007
The Prince Love Continues
Being a music journalist, it's sometimes easy to become a cynical, boozy, grumpy, faded hack. But hey, every job has its benefits. Don’t get it twisted though; just because we take great pleasure in slagging things off, even we have a day-off from the haterade every once in a while.
For me, my journalism kryptonite is the one and only Prince. Quite frankly, he could arrive onstage and fart for four hours and I’d act like it was the best show ever.
So last night, after doing what a good journalist does best and blagging myself two tickets to the hottest show in town, I had what could be described as a near-religious experience.
Prince proved he was the Number One Greatest Living Performer (alongside Mary J Blige of course, and, yes, I refuse to choose) for a number of reasons:
1) He wears stilettos. 2) He’s just so skinny and beautiful. When the girl beside me managed to blow him a kiss when he popped up to see us balcony-huggers, he did the cutest ‘Carry On’ style ‘Ohh Missus’ with his eyes – camp and yet provocatively sexy all at once. 3) His back-catalogue bitches – granted he played the meh-ish Kiss and Cream but he also dropped U Got The Look, Boys & Girls, Nothing Compares 2 U and Lets Go Crazy. 4) His backing dancers were like Beyoncé – on four keys of speed. Never have I seen such speedy acrobatics in all of my life. I mean, it really was a lot. 5) He had Maceo Parker onstage with him – dude can really, really play the sax. He does that whole circular breathing thing and shit – trust me, it’s pretty damn dope. 6) When he appeared one foot away from me on the aforementioned balcony, I was so excited I couldn’t even take a proper picture. Why oh why must the miracle of flash desert you in times of extreme need? (See pic, right for proof) 7) His voice remains utterly and truly exquisite – how does it drop from falsetto to bass so beautifully, I really don’t know. 8) He’s 48 and he can still move like a motherfucker – so he may no longer break out the splits, but he glides, sashays and pops about with the dexterity of a man half of his age. 9) He covered Gnarls Barkley’s horrible Crazy and made it sound delicious. 10) He got a slightly paunchy audience member up onstage to sing along to Play That Funky Music White Boy. How happy must that man be today? Especially cos he looked like a proper Prince nerd (i.e. me). 11) When another, clearly mullered participant attempted to hump his little legs, he ran off stage and reappeared with a towel on his head all embarrassed. Totally cute. 12) He played a tiny-weeny instrumental of my favourite Prince song ever – Sometimes It Snows In April. That song really reminds of my aunt, Gemma, who died of cancer in 1986. Which brings me to… 13) I believe many proper (some might say obsessed, but whatever) Prince fans love him so much is because his music reminds us of important parts of our lives. Seeing as his more famous songs were made in the ‘80s, when I’m guessing a lot of fans were either in their teens, 20s or 30s, of course, a lot of life-changing things happen. For me, Prince was the soundtrack to first crushes, a little heartache, loss of life and real good ole times. But whereas Madonna, Salt & Pepa and Michael Jackson also played in the background during those years, Prince’s lyrics, vocals and musicianship somehow spoke a whole lot louder to a teenager whizzing about with all those crazy hormones. You could really indulge yourself, ya know? To the point that today, 14 happened. 14) The day after the show, you can actually get slightly pathetically emotional listening to, say, Condition Of The Heart or Pop Life or Insatiable. Maybe it was seeing the mighty man in such close proximity, but some weird feelings somehow emerged. And, without sounding wanky, that just goes to show how like, cool and everything, music is, right? 15) His music remains relevant years and years later and doesn’t sound a jot dated. I mean, I loved the Jackson 5 and all but I swear if I hear ABC again, I may actually break some speakers. Purple Rain? Play that beotch everyday and I’ll love like I just heard it for the first time. 16) Finally, last night served to remind me how totally excited I am that I’m seeing him again this Summer. Yes, debunking the journo myth that we don’t pay for anything, I bought tickets for the 02 shows the second I heard they were on sale. In fact, ahem, I bought one ticket. I mean, I tried to buy 4 so I could with my friends but the views were crap, so I had to roll for dolo this time. Sad, maybe, but I don’t care. And at least this way I won’t have a friend like last night saying ‘Is this Sign O’ The Times, is it? Ohh, I think he’s going to do Alphabet St.’ It was all I could do not to throw her from the balcony. And this is a good mate too, but really, it’s like when you used to watch Dynasty on a Friday night and your uncle came over to pick up your cousins and him and your mum would talk all the way through. How annoying. 17) Well, I can’t really think of a 17, except to say that even putting all I love about last night/ the man himself into 16 points, it’s hard to truly do justice to the little gorgeous man. Just go beg/ borrow/ blag your 02 tickets if you can, because you will not, I repeat not, be disappointed.